Your best business development ideas in Rwanda

Hi everyone,

As a foreign entrepreneur, launching a business in Rwanda is a fantastic project and an exciting challenge. Some ideas are likely to succeed. Some others are promising but may not work as well as intended.

In your opinion, what kind of business or industry is likely to succeed in Rwanda? What kind of industry or service currently unavailable or underdeveloped in the country would meet local needs?

On the other hand, what are the most common business types foreign entrepreneurs would be eager to launch in the country but with very little chance of success?

Thank you for your insights.

Hi Pricilla

I have a few ideas that I think might help out. Before I proceed with any detailed explanation, I want to state clearly that there are untapped business opportunities in every industry all over the world; you just need to dig deeper to find such niches.

Kiwi Fruit Farming

There are very few markets where demand exceeds supply. One such market is for Kiwi fruits which, despite being a relatively new idea in East Africa, has taken the market by storm. There are very few farmers who have gotten wind of its valued benefits and you can take advantage of this loophole to make a timely investment.

The Courier Service Business Idea

There is no doubt that East Africa business environment has improved over the years and many investors have set up shop in all major towns across these countries. This has further created fresh demand for speedy delivery of goods and packages – a need that has not been properly met by the national postal service. The few big courier companies that rule the industry on the other hand have not been able to match the efficiency that most clients are looking for. According to research, clients are looking for courier companies that are small enough to offer personalized services and big enough to provide same day deliveries even at odd hours. Very few of the big companies meet these criteria – and here lies a modest opportunity for such to invest in. Starting a Courier Delivery Business all you'll need is a reliable customer-base and a good
reputation. Gathering a good customer-base should not be a big issue provided you give good value proposition and honest services. It is a simple business to start and operate, and you do not need any training to get off the blocks.

Why Not Start Your Own Small Perfume Business At

Research shows that East Africans alone spend over $150.million a month buying beauty products. These include bath and shower products, cosmetics, skin care, baby care, oral care and perfume products. Talking about perfume products, the local industry is largely dominated by foreign multinationals; which begs the question – are there not enough East African who can control their own market?
There is demand for scented perfume and even if you were to sell your product at 500% mark-up it would still be cheaper than most of the big brands on the shelves today. The secret to conquering this market when you are a small investor lies in producing a high quality product that can get you intimately connected with your target market.
But what does it take to create a perfume brand that can be loved by many people? As
it turns out, the underlying concept is very simple. You can even start a small “factory” in your bedroom and grow with it.

Start A Small Ornamental Fish Business

Ornamental fish business is estimated to grow at a steady pace over the next
15 years. However, despite the growing domestic demand, very few of our local entrepreneurs seem to have taken up this idea. As such, the niche-specific market has had to contend with an under-supply for many years. In fact, the vast majority of ornamental fish sold in Africa in general are imported mostly from Israel, Eastern Europe and Far East. And as I found out, breeding of tropical ornamentals is usually a
small-scale business, and there is nothing really complicated or high-tech about it.
You can therefore start your own smallholding today, and begin supplying nearby retail shops with cheaper and high-quality fish without the costs of international transport, customs clearance and the stress to the fish associated with being transported for many hours.

A Profitable Laundrette In A Busy Street

If you are looking for a business that is fairly passive (does not involve a lot of hard
thinking), and allows you to keep doing your current hustle, but still provides you with a nice
return on investment then starting a small laundry business could be your best bet.
In a laundry (also known as a laundrette or laundromat) you wash clothes for your
clients using water with the option of using a washing machine or manual labour.
My idea is that as an entrepreneur who simply wants to start small, you should invest in
a laundromat first and nurture it gradually until it grows into a fully-fledged dry cleaning outlet.

PR Consultancy Business

In today’s competitive market, reputation can be a company’s biggest asset – the thing
that makes them stand out from the crowd and gives them a competitive edge. Every
organization, no matter how large or small, ultimately depends on its reputation for survival
and success. Customers, suppliers, employees, investors, journalists and regulators can have a
powerful impact. They all have an opinion about the organizations they come into contact
with – whether good or bad, right or wrong. These perceptions will drive their decisions about
whether they want to work with, shop with and support these organizations.
You can set up your PR business and manage the spread of information between
individuals or organizations and the public. There are huge opportunities in this area since the
field is still not very saturated.

Children’s Entertainment Business

If you love children and enjoy having fun, starting a children’s entertainment business is
something you should seriously consider. Children, especially the younger ones, have lots of
time in their hands during the weekends. Many of them easily get bored and parents have
devised ways to keep them busy by taking them out to have fun and get entertained. There is
therefore a great business opportunity in children’s events and entertainment business.
Starting a children’s event and entertainment business is a great way to earn good
money every weekend, public holidays and on special occasions such as birthdays and other
children’s parties. It will also help children and parents enjoy special occasions

There are also Business Opportunities for People That Hate Selling.

-Event planning e.g corporate or a social event planner.
-Business coaching
-Cleaning services 
-Laundry services
-Market research
-Freelance writing
-movers and packers business

And so on and so on

Bonne chance.

I agree with Clive on two potential business ideas :

1. The Courier Service Business Idea
2. Children's entertainment.

I'm a local entrepreneur based in Kigali and think I might be useful helping you as I'm specialised in marketing and designing.

Feel free to drop me a  text **

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